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Knowledge Base Home aero-right Drag & Drop Editor aero-right How to Add Personalized Data to Emails

How to Add Personalized Data to Emails

Drag & Drop Editor Updated on November 30, 2021

You can add a personalized greeting to an email created in the drag n drop editor or the HTML editor. Personalization can include the contact’s first name, last name, or both, you can also provide an alternative text in case the contact details are not available. You can also add personalized data to your subject line.

Topics covered in this article:


Note: In some instances, you’ll see the TinyMCE logo when editing a text block. TinyMCE is a 3rd party we use to make our Drag and Drop better and faster. The logo will not appear in your emails, but only when you are editing a text block.


Subject line personalization

If you want to use personalization in your subject line and/or email, you would have to use the construct [contact_attribute:Field Name] where Field Name refers to the field name in your contact list. It is important to add the field name as it is shown in the field label, spaces must be included. For example, if you are using fields with multiple words like first name, there should be a space in between first & name. Another example would be the Extra 3 field, a space must be added between Extra & 3. Removing the space will cause the merge tag to fail.

Subject Line example: “[contact_attribute:first name] check out our new products,”

If James Anderson receives your email, it will say: “James check out our new products” in the subject line.


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Email greeting personalization


To add a greeting using the Drag & Drop editor, see the steps below.

  1. In the email campaign editor, click on the block in which you wish to place the greeting.
  2. Within the section, click where exactly you would want the greeting to appear.
  3. From the top menu bar, click on More on the right of the toolbar.
  4. Then click on Merge on the pop-up bar.
  5. Select Greeting
  6. In the Primary Greeting, enter the salutation and select the contact attribute that you want to display. You can select First name, last name, or both.
  7. An alternative greeting is used when the contacts attribute does not have any value.
  8. Click on Insert to set the greeting in the block.
  9. Click on the Save & Close option to save your changes to the email.

You can use the Preview button in the editor to check how the greeting would be displayed. Keep in mind the preview option will show the first contact in your list as an example. 

Note: If you want to use the greeting in your Custom HTML, the tag is: [Greeting:pretext=”Dear” field=”F” alttext=”Hello”] 

  • The “pretext” variable is to display the salutation. 
  • The “field” variable is to display the contact attribute where 
    • “F” = First Name 
    • “L” = Last Name 
    • “FL” = First name + Last Name
  • The “alttext” variable is to display the alternative greeting in case the contacts attribute does not have any value.

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Email content personalization

For easier personalization in the body of the email, you can use the Merge option provided in the email editor.

The Greeting option lets you add a greeting along with the first name and/or the last name for a contact. For example, Dear James. If the recipient does not have this information in the contact list, you can choose an alternative greeting to show instead such as Greetings!

The Contact Details option lets you select fields from your list. Every field in the contact list is available here. If the field is blank for a contact, it will show up blank in their email.

The Survey option lets you pull in active surveys created in your Benchmark account. The survey will show up as a link for recipients to click on.

The Facebook Like Button adds a button to your email, if recipients click on the button it will add a FB like to the web-version of your email. This button is only for the email and is not associated with your Facebook page.

Some of the common tags would be

[contact_attribute:first name] [contact_attribute:last name] [contact_attribute:email] or [contact_attribute:FIELD LABEL] where FIELD LABEL is the label of the field used in the contact list. To get the labels you can go to the detail of any contact and copy-paste the label e.g “Job Title” or “Business Phone” etc. These would translate into [contact_attribute:Job Title] and [contact_attribute:Business Phone].

If you would like to personalize your emails using other attributes, please refer to this FAQ: Merge tags available in Benchmark Email. 


  1. Make sure to include any spaces of the field name in the merge tag, if space is removed the merge tag will fail.
  2. Personalization will not show up if the field mentioned in the merge tag is empty in the list selected for the email campaign.
  3. The Preview and Specific Contact option in the email editor will let you see the merge tags used in the body of the email, the preview option does not show the merge tags used in the subject line.
  4. Sending a test email does not show merge tags, because there is no reference to specific contact details. If you would like to see how the merge tags will look in the subject line or body of the email, we recommend sending a test email to a contact present in the list you will be emailing (this could be your email address). The contact used for the test email should have the contact details used in the merge tags.
  5. The preview option uses a random contact in the list selected. If the random contact does not have contact details this will appear blank. Following are the steps to preview your email:
    1. In the editor, click on Test and select Specific contact.
    2. Enter the email address of any contact from your selected list and click on Update Preview.

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Using Emojis


You can also personalize your emails using Emojis. Our Emoji Picker is loaded with websafe and mobile-friendly emojis.

Avoid replacing words with emojis. Instead, use them to compliment your text in case your chosen character doesn’t display in your recipient’s inbox. An emoji’s display is determined by your recipient’s device type, operating system, and email client.

To learn more about Emojis in your subject lines, click here.

Benchmark also provides a feature by suggesting the top performed subject lines from your historical data, click here for more information.

It is always a good practice to write an impressive subject line. An eye-catching subject line provides better engagement in terms of opens and clicks. Click here for more tips on writing a compelling subject line.

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If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact our support team via Email, LiveChat or Phone.